Greg's Reviews > Robert B. Parker's Killing the Blues

Robert B. Parker's Killing the Blues by Michael Brandman
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's review
Nov 16, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: fiction-and-humor
Recommended for: Not Parker fans!
Read from November 15 to 16, 2011

Everyone is blessed with certain talents and attributes that can be developed into skills. One of mine is a well-honed skill of not writing like Robert B. Parker. And because I am so good at not writing like Parker, I can easily tell when others also don't write like Parker.

Michael Brandman doesn't write like Parker. It is apparent that he has studied Parker's writing style, probably talked with others who knew him well and had worked with him (family, friends, editorial team, etc.). The result, however, is a pale imitation of Parker's perhaps inimitable style. The language and word choice is similar, but off. The events described in the story are also off, somehow not what Parker's characters would have chosen to do. Less elegant, less intelligent, less thoughtful, less interesting. Stone's conversations with Dix, his therapist, are like what I might expect from an undergrad in psychology. Certain phrases and words jangle with the harshness of their misplacement (or placement at all) in the story line. It's unfortunate. With Parker gone, their are few writing today who could be his heir apparent. One that comes to mind is Robert Crais, author of the Elvis Cole/Joe Pike mysteries. I recommend Crais rather than Brandman for a flavor of Parker's style.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Meagan I totally agree with you!! parker is missed, but I still can't wait for the newest crais book..

message 2: by Kit (new) - added it

Kit Frazier Ack. I'm so glad to see your review. I'm more than half way through the book and want to stab my own eyes out with a #2 pencil. It seems like he tried to cram a character study into one novel by "telling" you what happened, not by the trademark Parker putting you in the character's shoes and walking (running, throwing) you through his life. Incredibly disappointing.

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